Take a whiff of Sista Smiff and you'll come back for more, that's fo sho!

Saturday, September 30, 2006

Sista's Scrapbook

Some pictures from awards night. Producer J gives a fantastic rundown of things behind the scenes so go read that. I can't believe I didn't get a picture of J that night. Way to go, Sista. I also failed to photograph my Bluegrass Blog friends.

Two Grascal Princesses: The pretty little one belongs to Jimmy Mattingly and the one in the pretty, blue dress belongs to us.

Two Hazels....Hazel Smith and the legendary Hazel Dickens. I was pretty awed to meet her.

The Cleavers aka The Smiffs. Mr. Smiff looks like he's passing gas here... And he looks as though he's aiming it at me. I wish my pretty skirt was showing here. It was a shiny, dark green and had this black, lacy stuff over it. My feet were already hurting here.

Peter Cooper is perhaps the hottest journalist in town. He writes well, but, he's also easy on the old eyes. I love to say his name like I'm British...Petah Coopah. Here, he's getting a quote from Ricky Skaggs.

Vince looks great, but, y'all...I don't know if he's taking medication, drinking or what...I hope there's not trouble in paradise. He's never had a reputation for being a drinker or drug user, but, his behavior of late makes you wonder. I hope everything's ok there. Oh...the cutie with him is the wonderful Steve Wariner. What a nice feller.

The most wonderful Kyle Cantrell interviews Mr. Smiff after the big win. "I owe it all to my wife" he was heard to say. Not really.

So, anybody who says Mr. Smiff doesn't smile, take a peek at this. True, he rarely smiles big, toothy, Guy Smiley smiles, but, I love it when he does. This was right after they won.

I'll put the rest on my Flickr and watch the Grascals website for more photos.

Friday, September 29, 2006

The Morning After

I was really hoping I could convince Mr. Smiff to carry out some trash for me this morning, but, I don't know that that's gonna happen. Mr. Smiff is not a haughty type of guy, but, I can't seem to scrape him off the ceiling this morning. I guess winning Entertainer of the Year will do that to a guy.

Some important things I forgot to do before commencing to the Opry House: I forgot to get a black bra and forgot to shave my legs. I forgot to put mascara on and we had to stop at Walgreens on the way to get some. That's so typical of me. I got a makeup smudge on my skirt before we left and on my black top. I can never go anywhere with everything intact, the way it's supposed to be.

The whole Hee Haw Gang of Smiffs had a great evening last night. We were joined by Hazel and our nephew, Adam. I am so glad our kids were able to be there and experience the whole thing. It was such a long night for them and I know at times they were bored, but, they all agreed that the longness of it all was worth it.

I was pretty bummed that the Bluegrass Blog was having server problems, but, that's live entertainment for you. Thank you to all those who attempted to follow along. I'm going to try to recap the night over there during the day today.

In spite of the snafus, I thoroughly enjoyed getting to meet and hang with the guys behind the Bluegrass Blog, John and Brance. Super guys who are so passionate about the music. Also, Tina Potter, who is with the IBMA was great to everybody. I got so tickled at Tina after the Entertainer award was announced when she said "I've been sitting on that for a week and couldn't tell anybody!"

I really enjoyed hanging with my blogging sister/XM Queen Producer J. She and Kyle Cantrell are such great friends to the Grascals and to the Smiffs. I've known Kyle since I was about 14.

I made a new girlfriend last night in Sheri Easter. I wish she lived next door to me. She is so down to earth. Not a phony bone in her body. Loved chatting with her and her adorable husband, Jeff. They participated in the grand finale with Sheri's family, The Lewis Family,who was inducted into the IBMA's Hall of Honor.

Vince Gill is very thin. I don't remember ever seeing him so thin.

The general consenus amongst the women backstage is that high heels are just plain bad. My feet hurt like hell. That's what I get for getting cheap shoes. One of these days, I will learn. It wasn't just me...just about every female I encountered was saying their feet hurt....even Sharon (Mrs. Ricky) Skaggs was carrying her shoes. Producer J has learnt her lesson and had on comfy flats. That is a smart woman. I tried to get Jimmy Mattingly's little girl, Ansley, to rub my feet. I offered her a buck. Can't imagine why she wouldn't oblige me.

I got the biggest kick out of running into my former boss, Stan Hitchcock. I was shocked to hear him say he is a regular reader here and gets whiffed often. I haven't seen Stan in about 16 years. He looks the same as he did when I answered his phone and took his messages. Seems like a lifetime ago.

It was a great night for everybody associated with The Grascals. Y'all have heard me whine about this and that being married to a traveling road musician. This year has been the hardest in all these 17 years, in terms of Mr. Smiff being gone, us not seeing him, him missing this and that, but, stuff like last night makes it worth it.

They are going to be guesting on the Grand Ole Opry tomorrow (Saturday 9/30) and will be on the televised portion on GAC so watch for them or listen live online.

I'll hopefully have pictures later today.

And The Winner Is...

It is 12:48 a.m., Friday morning. I'm not going to post the whole rundown of the evening now because it's been a long day and we're all tired. The server at the Bluegrass Blog was not real cooperative so my live blogging was kept to a minimum.

I did get to blog the very end, however, and heard Vince Gill say that Mr. Smiff and Them won Entertainer of the Year. Yep. I am about to go to bed with one of the IBMA's Entertainer of the Year. I kinda like the sound of that.

I'll give y'all a rundown tomorrow.

Thursday, September 28, 2006

Coiffin' It Up

After several days of running around, trying to make sure everybody has the proper attire for this awards show this evening, all we have to do is get dressed, make-upped, get in the car and go.

Wait til you see the pictures of the Beautiful Daughter with her gorgeous hairdo. I was watching Dancing With The Stars last week and Samantha Harris' hair was fixed so pretty and I told the D she oughta get hers fixed like that for the awards. She did and it is beautiful.

Just do me a favor and don't mention to Mr. Smiff how much all this hairdo beauty we aquired today cost.

IBMA Awards Day

Two Smiffs have write ups in this morning's Tennessean: Beverly Keel, the brand new entertainment writer, tells about the Mother In Law's upcoming tv gig.

Left of the Dial pointed out that Peter Cooper does a nice little write up on Mr. Smiff and them as well.

Today is a ridiculously busy day, trying to get ready for the IBMA awards tonight. Mr. Smiff was at the Opry House til late trying to do a soundcheck, but, there were some major sound issues and they have to go back this morning to do it. Steve Wariner is performing with them and I'm kinda excited about that. When I was about 15, I had the biggest crush on Steve. There was a time, I was certain I would be Mrs. Wariner, but, Caryn beat me to it. I loooove Steve Wariner.

All of the Smiffs are going so I've spent the last few days making sure everybody has awards show worthy clothes. #2 is wearing a miniature version of what his dad and the guys wear onstage. He is something of the mascot for the Grascals. #1 has actually agreed to wear something other than a t shirt with Black Sabbath or some other heavy metal act on it and the Daughter...I never could've worn a dress like she's wearing at 13 when I was 13. When we shopped, we went round and round because she wanted to wear a dress much more sexy and I told her we had to have a compromise. It took a bit, but, we finally found something we agreed on. (Note to self: Leave #2 at home next time we shop for his sister. He finds the topless mannequins rather humorous and makes sure everyone sees them)

I will be live blogging for the Bluegrass Blog the sights and sounds of the whole thing so do check over there to see how I do.

Wednesday, September 27, 2006

Unemployment Fun

As I was dining in the food court of Opry Mills today, I was so wishing I had Rex L. Camino and Short and Fat with me.

The reason for this is nobody, but, nobody would've enjoyed being serenaded by the Do-It-Yourself- Recording booth and the poor soul inside who thought she could sing, screaming "Daddy's Hand's" at the top of her lungs...nobody but those two would've understood the beauty of the moment like they would've.

Life Isn't Fair

It must be a bitch to be the son of a rock and roll legend like John Lennon, but, yet, have the misfortune of inheriting your mother's singing voice.

Tuesday, September 26, 2006

Even Baptist Women Want To Know....

This is a family blog here and I suppose it's not fittin' for a Southern Baptist woman, such as myself, to be asking such a question in a public forum, but, I must.

These commercials they run for Viagra and it's ED prevention bretheren....the one where the guy is watching the big game on tv and the Mrs. gets a little randy and heads towards the bedroom and he has to decide whether to continue watching football or using that groovy invention called the VCR and go for a shag.

Then, they cut to Dr. Richard Edwards (not his real name. Just a little joke from me. Heh. Get it? No extra charge for that one) the one where that doctor, with a straight face, goes over all the possible side effects of Viagra and then warns of possible injury and for the love of Ron Jeremy, get straight to the ER if you experience an erection lasting longer than 4 hours.

I didn't know it was possible for something like that to go on for 4 hours. I mean...does that happen?

Frankly, I'm glad we've come around to discussing personal things about the menfolk in our advertising. We've had to endure those horrible, feminine hygiene product commercials forever. Ugh...all those horrnedous "Mom...do you sometimes not feel fresh?" commercials.

One Of The Best Movies Ever Made?

Now that I'm unemployed, I've reverted back to my true, nocturnal nature. I'm getting back in the habit of staying up late. Mr. Smiff and I are a good match that way. He keeps more Elvis hours than I do, being a musician, but, he and I both are into some staying up late. The decade I spent working regular people working hours, I could barely make it to 11 most night, but, now, it kinda reminds me of the days when our big kids were little, before they started school, before I started working and it was not unusual for us to stay up very late.

Last night, I pulled a late nighter. Mr. Smiff had a late night showcase for IBMA (late as in they played at midnight) and he got home about 1:30 or so. I went to bed with the intention of sleeping, however, I was sidetracked by a fantastic movie that I had never seen, but, had always wanted to see.

As I started watching The Last Picture Show, it appeared to me to be a story about Cybill Shepherd and Jeff Bridges characters wanting to get laid and that was it. If you've seen this fantastic movie, you know it's about so much more than that.

The cast in this movie was unbelievable: Very young Cybill and Jeff, Timothy Bottoms, Ellyn Burstyn, Randy Quaid, and it's no wonder Cloris Leachman and Ben Johnson won Oscars. I don't know if it was cause it was the middle of the night, the black and white film, the amazing soundtrack with people like Hank, Sr., Hank Thompson, Eddie Fisher....the brilliant direction of Peter Bogdanovich and writing by Larry McMurtry..this movie is perhaps one of the best movies ever made.

It's very rare I think about characters in a movie the day after, but, I've found myself thinking about the characters all day today. Unusual.

Rent it if you haven't seen it.

Ben Savage is NOT Dead

My site meter shows that I'm getting a ton of hits of people trying to find out if actor Ben Savage is dead.

I'm going to say this one more time...Ben Savage is not dead. If he were dead, he'd have been on the cover of People, The Star, all over every cheesy entertainment magazine that exists.

That poor boy of Anna Nicole Smith's did nothing to be famous, except for having the poor fortune to have been her kid and dang if I saw his last photos, supposedly taken minutes before he died, under strange circumstances, in a hospital room. So trust me, if Ben were no longer with us, we'd have had it in our faces and be sick and tired of the whole thing.

There was a rumor years ago that Jerry Mathers, aka "The Beaver" had died, as well as Butch Patrick who played Eddie Munster. Both of those guys are still live and kicking, albeit, they've turned into middle aged guys that look like somebody's Paw Paw.

I haven't had this many random hits since I posted about Paul Eels death a couple months ago. I've had more hits from all over the country, including Hawaii, of people looking up Paul. I have a lot of new Arkansas readers because of that.


Me and Mr. Smiff are babysitting our 16 month old niece today. It's been awhile since I've had to keep up with a toddler. Mattie reminded me, as soon as I walked in her house with her, what it's like to change a poopie diaper. I mean, this girl wasted no time in reaquainting her Auntie Sista with diapers, wipes and Desitin.

It should be interesting today to see how much we've aged. I hope we have the energy to keep up with her.

Monday, September 25, 2006


I don't think I mentioned here that Twisted Mister, I mean Mr. Smiff and the Grascals will be playing at the World Famous Station Inn tomorrow night at 9:00, following an appearance on the Tuesday night Grand Ole Opry. Tomorrow is the first Opry appearance for the week cause they go back Saturday night to be on the televised portion.

I'll tell more about this Thursday,but, your Sista will be live blogging the IBMA Awards show for my friends at the Bluegrass Blog. Those guys might be sorry they let me do that. Those awards shows make me a little on the nutty side. I was so wigged out last year, I had to have a little alcoholic beverage and I'm not a drinker. If I feel the need to partake at the pre-awards reception for the nominees, it should be an interesting read. "Drunken Blogging With Sista Smiff." I can barely hold one beer so maybe it might be in the best interest to stick with Diet Something or another.

Dishwashers and Hell

If you've been following the saga of the passing of the Smiff Dishwasher last week (may it rest in peace), you can sleep well tonight because there is a new dishwasher on its way.

I did my research on dishwashers and decided to go back to whence I came and went with Sears since the Kenmore we had performed so nicely all that time. I got tickled at Mr. Smiff testing the salesman on the whys and how to's of dishwasher installation and we came to the conclusion that the Sears Guy did not know diddly shit about dishwashers.

While at the mall, the Daughter was pumped to go spend some birthday money and a gift card. The store that she had a gift card for, Hot Topic, appeared to be the sort of establishment where Satan himself lives. Nothing but t shirts and crap with skulls on it. I think my favorite t-shirt was the one with the symbol for satanism on it. I was really hoping my beautiful baby girl would choose that one. I'd have been one proud mother, for sure.

I would prefer spending a day locked inside Abercrombie anyday over the Hell Store. I don't know why somebody thought this was the store for the daughter. She told Mr. Smiff as we approached Hell Store, "Now Dad, this is an Emo and Goth store" to which this Star of Bluegrass replied " A WHAT store?" I don't think either word meant a thing to him.He sat outside while the Daughter perused the aisles of skull paraphanalia, body piercing jewelry, tattoo magazines...

The only two things in the entire store that I would have bought was a Willie Nelson t-shirt and a copy of Johnny Cash's autobiography, which I have already read. I guess Cash is something of a patron saint of the Goth and Emo kids. I wondered if the girl working there had any idea that the Cash book that she was selling told of Johnny Cash's deep, persnal, relationship with the Lord Jesus Christ AND had pictures of Billy Graham in it?

I was quite relieved when the daughter said to me "There is nothing i want here. Let's go to American Eagle." Thank you, Lord.

It will be about a week before the new dishwasher is delivered and installed though. That means another week of washing dishes by hand. Have I mentioned how much that sucks?

Sunday, September 24, 2006

While You Have The Chance...

My dad's first cousin, Libba, passed away yesterday at the age of 86. She had taken a bad fall earlier in the week and I knew that the outlook for her was probably not so good. I did go out and get a card to send to her as soon as I heard about her fall. I filled it out, signed it, put her name on the envelope and had every intention of looking her address up, getting a stamp and putting the card in the mail. It's not like I've been extra busy now that I have plenty of time during the day.
This is not a relative that I was very close to, in terms of communicating regularly or being close to her when I was growing up. In fact, the first time I remember meeting Libba and her wonderful husband, Frank, was at Dad's memorial service in 1992. I was so touched at the time that they drove up from their home in Chattanooga and they were just the nicest, warmest people. I instantly felt bonded to them.
Libba's father and my grandfather were brothers. They were very, very close. They suffered through a difficult childhood with an abusive father and up until they were old men and as long as they were able to, they made regular visits, in spite of the many miles between Chattanooga, TN and San Antonio, Texas. They were tight. They made a pact that whoever died first would go to the other's grave and "christen" it. Use your imagination as to what that meant. My grandfather followed up on that pact after Uncle Homah died in 1973.

I think the closeness between the brothers and the immense love those two had for each other is what made me feel like I knew Libba and the times I was able to visit with her were very special moments. I had the same experience the first time I met her daughters. Their personalities, sense of humor were just like the girls in my family. It had to be cause of the Brothers. Had to be.
I wish I could've spent more time with Libba. I last saw her two summers ago. She was the epitome of what one would think a lady would be. She had four wonderful children, all extremely succesful people (one son was a dentist for one of the President's even), a number of grandkids (also high achivers). Her husband, Frank, is one I will one day do a post about. He was a Prisoner of War during World War II for several years and his escape was something that would make a killer movie. Great people.
Just another reminder to follow up on those stirrings and not let them slide.

Times Haven't Changed

Two thirteen year old girls...one in 2006, one in 1982.

Being the mother of a nearly 15 year old and now a 13 year old, I hear lots of interesting stuff. Just when I find myself at my wits end in dealing with them, something happens that reminds me of when I was that age and that we're not totally living on different planets.

There has been a rumor floating around My Space that Ben Savage, younger brother of Fred, known for his role on Boy Meets World was killed in a car accident. My son tells me last night "Mom...Corey Matthews died." (Who the hell is Corey Matthews? Ah, the character on Boy). Then, this morning, the daughter says "Momm-eh....Ben Savage died." Even 8 year old #2 got in on the action.

Apparently, Ben Savage is alive and well. I am glad. I was always partial to Big Brother Fred, who was on The Wonder Years as that precious Kevin Arnold.

Why is it kids like to make up stuff like this? It's nothing new. When I was in 7th grade (same grade my daughter is in now) the big rumor that went around was that Belinda Carlisle, from the Go Go's, had overdosed and died. We didn't have the internet then and I have no clue how it got started. I was so relieved Belinda wasn't dead because I loved me some Go Go's.

This whole Ben Savage thing reminds me of how crappy middle school can be for another reason. 7th grade, I had this thing all year for Andrew Savage. I mean...I dug him. Finally, when summer came, we got to talking on the phone a little bit. (to me, that was serious business. He was probably just being nice) Then, I went off to church camp and my best friend moved in on my man. I laugh now and say "That's 13 year olds for you" but boy, at the time, I was crushed. Not so much at him, but, at my best friend. She was this beautiful, blue-eyed, blonde and I ......was not. She had no trouble getting the attention of the male set.

Oddly enough, this best friend, who I had been friends with since we were 4....we were never close again. Maybe that was just the regular course of things, but, I always thought it had to do with that stupid boy, who was, like, not all that.....We did resume communication though and even though I haven't seen her for years, we do email from time to time.

Oh no...I'm surrounded by Middle School drama and I'm reverting. It all just shows how with parenting, you get to relive your Sesame Street phase and your Awkward Phase.

Friday, September 22, 2006

So What Are YOU Doing This Weekend?

Guess who is guest blogging over at Nashville Is Talking this weekend? Y'all come by and see me.

Does This Mean There's Something Wrong With Me?

I went to the mall this morning to get a pedicure and while sitting in the chair, the radio was on 92.9 and they played the theme to Flashdance and it set my heart all a twitter. Why is this? Yeah, I'm 37 and a grown up, but, dammit, I love that song. It makes me feel good and always has.

Funny how a song can instantly transport you back in time and you can remember where you were, what all was going on, how you thought about and saw things...this song is like instant time travel back to the latter part of 8th grade for me.

Flashdance was one of the first R rated movies I ever saw without sneaking in. Cousin Sharon took me and Mandi and we saw not one, but, two R rated movies back to back. The other was Trading Places. Talk about Heathen Heaven...I was in it that day. That was the summer of 1983 when I was 14 and had taken my first plane trip alone to Houston.

I want you to be happy too because it's Friday and a little on the dreary side so go get your own Irene Cara Fix. (I hate that this Beta Blogger doesn't let me put the You Tubes up like it did so you have to take a link.)

Enlightenment (Warning: Heavy, Middle of the Night Subject)

Washing dishes by hand sucks. I want my dishwasher. It is perhaps the best invention ever.

I am not one who washes my dishes before they go into the dishwashing machine. They go in pretty much as is. I know people who do the whole washing routine before they go in. Not me. They come out clean as a whistle. Every once in awhile, I might have to run something through again or there might be a little spot of dried something on a plate, but, rarely. They make them so good now, they grind stuff up really good.

My mother doesn't have a dishwasher anymore. She did while I was growing up and did until she moved into the stepfather's house (that sounds nawty doesn't it? Trust me, it wasn't). It's just her now so I suppose washing dishes for one isn't so horrible.

Mr. Smiff has an aunt that doesn't have nor desire a dishwasher and everytime we visit, she spends the entire time washing dishes for all the people that tend to gather at her house. That one baffles me.

I guess I'm spoiled. I like my dishwasher and want it noooooooooow. We're hopefully going to get one sometime over the weekend. I'm kinda partial to the ones they make now that have the silverware basket in the door. The new Smiff Dishwasher also must be in Bisque since the other appliances are that color. I would hate to make a potential fashion faux pas and get a black or stainless steel one and it clash with the others.

Thursday, September 21, 2006

Country Cookin' Makes Ya Good Lookin'

Y'all are gonna be wishing you were eating with the Smiff's tonight. I'm becoming something of a Paula Deen fanatic and today we're having her Taco Soup. It's pretty easy and smack-yo-mama good. You can get the recipe here.

I made her Butterscotch Delight, too. I never make dessert. These Smiffs are going to be so spoiled with me at home all the time. I'll post that recipe later.

I'm about ready to make a road trip to Savannah for no other reason except to eat at Paula's restaurant. I also think a good pairing would be Paula and Hazel.

Sista and the Sweaty Guy

I was reading Dooce and she asked the question, referring to dating, "What are your deal breakers?" My Schishter told me just last week, that I really need to tell y'all the story of "The Sweaty Guy." I had forgotten about the Sweaty Guy. It was one of the funniest experiences I have ever had in life and I totally forgot about the Sweaty Guy. I don't even know that Mr. Smiff has heard this story.

I've mentioned before that Mr. Smiff and I went through a "rough" period some years ago and we actually weren't married for a little over a year. During that time, I went on a few dates that were very unmemorable. That is until the Sweaty Guy came along and he was memorable in a bad sort of way.

The Sweaty Guy was extremely fun to talk to/email with. He was quite intelligent, articulate, humorous, had a really good job. I went to meet him for lunch. He was reasonably nice looking...he was no Short and Fat or CeeElCee (but, who is?) but, he looked kempt and looked as if he probably had good hygenic habits. He was very warm and friendly. Everything was looking good...until we sat down.

As we began to eat, I noticed he seemed to be perspiring a little. Probably nervous...afterall, he was dining with me, Sista Smiff, all of my hotness and all would cause some nervousness. (I am being facetious here). Really, I chalked it up to a little nervousness. No big whoop.

The perspiring a little increased to out and out sweating. At first, he looked like he had been doing a little exercise. I kept thinking, "This will stop soon." No such luck. It kept on and got worse and worse. Sweat was pouring out of him like somebody had turned on a faucet. I had never seen anything like this before in my life. I've seen my father have night sweats when he was dying of cancer and it wasn't anything like this. I couldn't look right at him, for that would be awkward. He never slowed down his chatter for a second. It was almost as if he did not notice he was sweating all over creation.

He must've sensed my totally freaking out at the wonder that a person could sweat like this because he said "Don't mind me...I sweat when I eat." Oh ok. That TOTALLY makes sense. (?) The sweating continued and believe it or not...got worse. He was wiping himself with napkins, his shirt...I did feel bad for him but could not wait to get out of there.

He tried to smooth the situation over by telling me how he stalked his ex-wife. That made all the pool of perspiration around the table roll away. (Dating tip: Do not tell somebody on your first date how jealous you were of your ex-wife. It's NOT attractive)

Finally, it was time to leave. I was feeling like the Sweaty Guy was digging him some Sista. I was almost sure he was going to try to touch me in some sort of affectionate way, be it a hug or whatever.

Your Sista is not a touchy feel-ly gal and can't fake it, ya see, but that was not the issue on this day. I didn't want to touch the poor Sweaty Guy, not even the slightest fingertip. He was soaking wet and had to have smelled bad. (Never mind that whole Stalking the Ex Wife thing...I wasn't fillin' it) I pictured the Sweaty Guy trying to hug, or God forbid, kiss me and me trying to get out of it like Beverly D'Angelo tried to avoid Cousin Eddie's kisses in the Vacation movies.

We get out to the parking lot and I'm thinking "Oh crap..he's going to try to Cousin Eddie me" so as he is still incessantly talking, I ease my way away from him towards my car. "Ok..bye"...get in my car and git. I've never been so happy to get back to work from lunch as I was that day.

It didn't dawn on me through the whole lunch time how funny this experience was. It was not until I got back to work and was telling my co-workers about the experience. I got to telling the story of the Sweaty Guy and laughed so hard, I nearly wet my pants and had these people (who all mostly hated me and thought I was totally of the devil, for some reason) rolling.

The Sweaty Guy emailed me later that afternoon and said something like "Was everything ok? You seemed to leave rather quickly." Uh...yeah. He went on to tell me he had some sort of heart condition and that the medication he took caused profuse sweating. I felt so bad for the guy. I hope I have conveyed in this little story the amount of perspiration this guy eliminated. He was probably dehydrated afterwards.

He emailed me a few more times, hoping to get together again and I don't remember what I said to brush him off. I really didn't want to hurt his feelings because he was not a bad guy (except for his penchant for stalking).

It's a jungle (gym) out there in the dating world. I don't envy the single folks.

Wednesday, September 20, 2006

Do You Know...

How long of a lifespan does a dishwasher have? Ours is seemingly sickly. We've had it ten years and never once had to have a repairman look at it. It's been a dandy.

Anybody out there an expert on household appliances?

Tuesday, September 19, 2006

The Pitter Patter of Little Paisley's

I watched part of Father of the Bride II this past Sunday on TBS. It's an ok movie. One of those movies you can watch when nothing else is on. I think the first installment of the remake of this little series, Father of the Bride, was a lot better.

The original FOB was fantastic, with Spencer Tracy, Elizabeth Taylor and the sequel to that one, Father's Little Dividend, was great. Anything with Spencer Tracy is great though. He could've been in something like Jackass and it would've been a classic.

Anyway, as I suffered through the ridiculousness that is Father of the Bride II, I was looking at Kimberly Williams with her little pregnancy pillow on and I got to thinking "I wonder if Kimberly and Brad [Paisley] are going to have children?"

Brad has been a good friend of Hazel's since he started getting famous. He calls her all the time from here and yonder and I believe he will be appearing on Hazel's new show Southern Fried Flicks soon. Even though they're big buddies, I have yet to meet the father-to-be. Maybe I could give him some baby advice. That is, if I can remember. I'm so strapped in Teen Hell at the moment, I have to remind myself these two were once cute little toddlers drawing on the wall with Sharpies and stuff.

I was reading in some blog yesterday (sorry I don't remember who it was or I'd link it) but the writer is a mother of four and was talking about how people ask her pregnancy/baby advice all the time and she has a hard time remembering details.

I'm sorta like that at times. I have been pregnant a total of 27 months and spent ten years changing diapers and carrying a little one on my hip. I love children, but, I'm not one of these that has to touch and hold every little person I see. I got wo' out from living on Sesame Street. I do kinda miss Mr. Rogers a little bit. I'm at the point now when I see pregnant women, I feel sorry for them and say "Woo hoo...glad that ain't me."

The mean part of Sista Smiff is secretly hoping Kimmy gets a stomach full of stretch marks.

Mr. Smiff Hits The Mothership

One good thing about being unemployed is that I had the rare opportunity to spend a day out with Mr. Smiff. It was quite romantic.

We stopped by the Hairdo Place and got haircuts. Mr. Smiff didn't get much in the way of style, but, I did. I wish I could make my hair look like this everyday.

Then, Mr. Smiff got his first taste of the Mothership. I was pretty excited to take him there, for he is a North Carolina boy that was raised around some good barbecue. His family raised hogs, for heavens sake...he knows what would be good and what wouldn't be. These were the exact words upon tasting the barbecue and ribs:

"This beats the shit out of Whitts."

My man may not have the fancy words, but, he do know what he's talking about. It was great there today, but, there I had me a good hairdo and there was no Dr. Funkenswine in sight. The new girl up front claimed he was there but I never saw him.

Mr. Smiff loved the bathrooms, too. Those ribs were smokin' today, as usual.

Monday, September 18, 2006

Gassy Barrel

We went to the Music Valley Dr. Cracker Barrel last night, along with the Mother in law and nephew. The service was soooo slow. Unusually slow. I don't remember ever having it take that long to get served at the Cracker Barrel. That was not the only first I experienced at the CB.

We were seated in the smoking section (it was quicker) at the first table by the kitchen. I was seated next to Mr. Smiff and we were facing the kitchen. There was a table full of people behind me. I didn't pay any attention to them. I was mostly noticing two tables near us with older people who chain smoked the whole time. At one point, I leaned over to Mr. Smiff and said "I'm so glad they brought them their food so they would put their ciggarettes down for a minute." I mean, these people were serious about their smoking.

Because it took what felt like 3 hours before our food arrived, I pondered and watched the Chain Smoking Old People, told #2 to sit down about 80 times and waited.

Suddenly, out of the blue, I hear two farts, followed by a dramatic pause and then another. These were not "Oops" kinda farts. These were deliberate, concentrated and well thought out farts. Whoever they belonged to had to think to themselves "I'm in a public place and I have gas that needs to be released. There are people all around me. Do I fart or not? I think I will fart." Do keep in mind the Fart Owner was directly behind me. I was showered with gas. Strange gas belonging to someone I knew not.

Mr. Smiff's first reaction was that it was me who delt said fart. Because he spends a large amount of his time traveling with 5 other guys who take great pleasure out of flatulence, it wasn't quite as disturbing to him as it was me. Welcome to his world. Mother In Law Smiff did not have the blessing of hearing the explosion.

I was so stunned. I was totally unbelieving I had been farted on by a stranger. I didn't want to turn around and look because I was just so shocked. The daughter thought it was me as well because she said my face turned red. I got so tickled. The Mother in Law also became suspicious that I had lived up to the saying that "The first smeller's always the feller."

Praise the Lord and pass the air freshener, the party containing the Farter got up and left. It was almost as if they left us a parting gift. I was still not recovered from the whole experience when Mr. Smiff pointed out that the Farter returned to the scene of the crime to leave a tip. Just as he pointed this out, I took a sip of my drink and proceeded to spew it all over #1 Son and Nephew Smiff. I have never before spit drink on anybody while laughing.

As Mr. Smiff said so eloquently, this guy put the crack in Cracker Barrel.

An Opry Poll

Next week is a busy week for Mr. Smiff and band as all the die hard, bluegrass enthusiasts will converge on Downtown Nashville for IBMA's(International Bluegrass Music Association) World of Bluegrass celebration. The week culminates in an awards presentation on Thursday at the Opry House.

Mr. Smiff and them are up for three awards, including the prestigious Entertainer of the Year. The people over at the Opry's website are doing an unscientific poll. Do us a favor and go over there and vote for them.

This reminds me I've got to get something to wear to this little soiree next Thursday night. Guess I better get on that.

Sunday, September 17, 2006

By George

Mr. Smiff and Terry Eldredge are going to be visiting with Traci Todd on George The Bluegrass Show on WRVU. You can listen online or the old fashioned way by tuning into 91.1 FM.

Yoga + Sista = Wrongness

This is why I don't do Yoga. Sure's I'm a Sista, that is what would happen to me if I were to ever go to a yoga class.

M is for the many things my mother gave me. Besides the square, flat butt and no visible waist line (Mr. Smiff once tried to convince me I had the same sort of build, pre-children, as a young Esther Williams. HA! Liar.) unexpected explosions fall under the catgegory of Stuff I Inherited From The Sullivan Clan That I Wish I Wouldn't Have...along with low self esteem, allergies, thick eyebrows and short legs.

Yet, I smile anyway.

Friday, September 15, 2006

A Little Slow To Catch On, But, I'm Learning...

I've learned a coupla interesting things this week:

Did you know there is a girl at my daughter's middle school who is, like the Queen of Bubble Letters? She can make them so good, she charges kids a buck to draw them on their notebooks.
#1 Son has a future in comedy writing. He and his buddy started this little write-fest this morning. Now, don't nobody get all "That's racist" on me. I think it's extremely clever and it made me laugh out loud. But this is the "Tyler and Austin Method of Learning Chinese in Five Minutes": (He says you must read out loud or you won't get it."

That's not right=Sum Ting Wong

Are you harboring a fugitive?=Hu Yu Hai Din

See me ASAP=Kum Hia Nao

Stupid Man=Dum Fuk

Small Horse=Tai Ni Po Ni

Did You Go To The Beach?=Wai Yu So Tan

I bumped into a coffee table=Ai Bang Mai Fa Kin Ni

I think you need a face lift=Chin Tu Fat

It's Very Dark In Here=Wao So Dim

I thought you were on a diet=Wai Yu Muc Ching

This is a tow away zone= No Pah King

Staying out of sight=Lei Ying Lo

He's cleaning his automobile=Wa Shin Ka

Your body odor is offensive=Yu Stin Ki Pu

Great=Fa King Su Pah

What's Up=Wa Sa Pen Ing

I laughed so hard. It's so dang funny, I asked him repeatedly, before I posted, if they stole this from somewhere. He better not be lying about that. If it turns out they plagerized this, it's still funny, I don't care who ya are.

Something else, you know I've been watching this free dvd of the first season of Grey's Anatomy and as bad as I hate to admit this, I am hooked. My friend Chris will be so happy.
We can count Patrick Dempsey on my list of men I would kiss right on the mouth if I were in the same room with them, even if Mr. Smiff were standing there.

Shame On You, Gretchen

Gretchen Wilson has this nice, new six pack and I don't mean beer. She has this wonderful washboard stomach now and in her latest video, she's letting the world see it.

I saw Gretchen on some interview show last week and they asked her about her trimmer figure and cool abs and she sat there on national television claiming she had not done anything to get those abs. She tried to convince me she woke up one day and there they were. The Ab Fairy came during the night and blessed her with this gorgeous stomach. Does Gretchen think we are retards?? That is a lie of Naomi Judd proportions.

The thing that got me about it is she claimed that the new abs came from "busy-ness". Now, if Busy-ness were the cause of a washboard stomach, me and Busy Mom would be centerfolds for a body building magazine.

Is Gretchen afraid her redneck fans would accuse her of selling out if she said "I have a trainer?" Hell. That right there doesn't endear you to the female fans, who buy all the music. Gretchen could relate to them more if she'd just admit, "I have to work at this like everybody else." You can't convince me any woman that has had a child has Six Pack abs without doing a jillion crunches a day and staying away from certain foods. That insults my feminine intelligence.

Tanya Tucker, back when she had a drop dead figya, tried to make the same claim that she had good genetics and didn't do anything to stay fit. Heh. Obviously, that was not the case.

I'd say most women, past a certain age, post childbearing, have to work really, really hard to maintain the figure. Martina McBride is one of the rare exceptions, but, she is so scrawny (have you ever seen her little bony arms and legs?) as are the Mandrell Sisters. If you've ever seen one of them in person, you know they're like little rats, they're so scrawny. TV has always made them look voluptuous and curvy, but, trust me, they ain't.

Speaking of Tanya Tucker, are they going to bring Tuckerville back? I love that show. Not as much as I love Rabbi Shmuley and the Little People, though.

Thursday, September 14, 2006

Wal Martin'

Mr. Smiff is gone today so I knew I had to get my SAHM hiney in gear and get something accomplished today. There is much to be done at the Casa de Smiff. I have a hard time getting stuff done when everybody's here. I'm pleased with me for what I got done today and plan on tomorrow being as fruitful.

One thing I love about being home during the day is if you have to go to the grocery store or Wal Mart,(I love how some people call it "Wal Marts") there's not oodles of crowds to fight. I also like going without one of the Smiff Kids.

This desire to have an enjoyable trip to the store midday took me to my local Super Wal Mart today. I was blessed, as you will be, as it was a good day to go to Wal Mart, for there was a celebrity sighting.

I was checking out and happened to notice one T. G. Sheppard standing in front of Customer Service. I figured his lady friend, Kelly Lang, must be lurking about because he had that look that the menfolk get when they're waiting on us to get something done in public.

Now first of all, I have to say, oncet upon a time, T. G. Sheppard was sma-okin' hawt and I think he could still be. Back in the 80's, T. G. (his real name is "Bill". Heh.) was making wimmin all over the US of A get all hot and bothered singing about the Slow Burn and asking us through song Do You Wanna Go To Heaven, Party Time, Last Cheater's Waltz and my personal favorite T.G. song, War Is Hell On The Homefront Too. When that song came out, I loved it. I thought it had a good beat and was easy to dance to. I didn't know the song was about a lonely woman with a husband off at war, having a Tho-down with the grocery delivery boy.

Anyway, the Teege was hot in his day. The sad thing about T. G. is he has not accepted the fact that he is no longer 40 anymore. He had on rather short, loose shorts and his wig was just as un-natural looking as a black lady with platinum blonde hair. He seems to have an affinity for makeup, thinking it makes him look younger. Guess what? It doesn't and it's really sad. If he'd just be hisself, I bet you the farm he would look a LOT better. Remember when Paul Simon finally gave up and quit wearing his wig? Paul has never been what I'd consider hawt but wigless, he looks much better, as I bet T. G. and any other wig wearing feller would.

So apparently Kelly was returning something and T. G. was waiting nicely on her and she turned and looked at him and they got to giggling about something. Probably an inside joke, but, it was sweet. In spite of the fact that T. G. is old enough to be her daddy and he needs to lose the wig and makeup and be himself, they are a sweet couple. Kelly looked really good. She has been dealing with breast cancer the last year or two and has had more than one round of chemo.

Kelly is one of those singers that has been around forever. I can remember when I was a teenager, she was singing locally here. She is a lovely girl (she's a few years older than me, therefore, she's a girl) and could've been a big star had some major label worked with her. It's so weird how the music business works.

Wednesday, September 13, 2006

Dancing With Bloggers?

I don't care what anybody says, Tucker Carlson is cute. So what if he's not a dancer? Isn't that the whole idea behind Dancing With The Stars? The little guy from Saved By The Bell dances too good. He's boring. I want to see the ones that can barely tap their foot in time get out there and cut a rug.

To me, the real star of Dancing With the Stars tonight was the appearance by this guy, who also made a rare appearance at the Blogger Meet Up last Saturday not once, but, twice. It kinda spruced up the Pheedo Guy's presentation, I think.

I think a Dancing With Bloggers would make for some great television. We could pair Sarcastro with Busy Mom to do the Tango; John with Kay Brooks to do the Samba; CeeElCee with the Pheedo Guy to do the Waltz....Aunt B and Kleinheider would make a killer dance duo..the possibilities are just endless.

The Many Faces of John Amos

I'm not a big network tv watcher. I did want to see Dancing With The Stars last night, but, forgot until the very end. I missed most of the show because we had gotten to watching Dick Cavett's wonderful interview with Mel Brooks on OnDemand (watch it...it's fabulous).

I tuned into DWTS just in time to see Jerry Springer do his thing. Considering the man has never danced, I thought he did ok. What I saw of Sara Evan's seemed a little blah.

So anyway, this new show called Men In Trees came on after Dancing With The Stars. It was ok. The raccoon that kept getting into Anne Heche's room and eating her $9,000 wedding dress was a little far fetched, but, I guess it has potential.

John Amos was on this Men In Trees show, playing the local pilot. During a commercial, I did a quick channel check. I came upon the Jesus Channel (TBN) and there was a movie on. I stopped for a second because the little guy that used to be on Family Matters was on. Not that I'm a raging fan of that show, but, I was trying to figure out where I knew him from. They went to another scene and there was John Amos playing a preacher or something, giving a talk on how to become a Christian. When I left him on Men In Trees, he was sitting at a bar, drinking a beer and here he was witnessing! Maranatha!

How cool is this? I had to check TVLand to see if Good Times was on to see if I could find him on a third channel at the same time, flaring those famous nostrils of his, threatening JJ. Good Times was on, but, sadly, it was an episode done after James' untimely death.

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

The Recipe

I bet you thought I was going to give the Baldwin Sisters' "recipe", didn't ya?

I feel it is only right I share this most wonderful recipe for Spaghetti and Meatballs with the blogworld. I've been making this recipe for about 20 years. It came to me by way of my late Aunt Pat, but, the credit of it's goodness goes to one Annie Giordano of Alexandria, LA. It takes a little time to make, but, it's absolutely fantastic.

I remember in the early days of marriage, I could make a pot of this and it would last us a few days. Now that the Smiff Kids have come and grown, this recipe here was cleaned out by us tonight. If you want to feed a bunch, you might oughta double the recipe.

I also have this recipe in a cookbook that Pat gave me when I got married. Some of my "specialty" recipes that people have always asked me for came from this cookbook-The Bishop's Bounty:Food From Heaven That Tastes Divine is in its third printing and benefits St. Mary's School in Alexandria. If you are a cookbook collector, you need to order this one. My copy is worn and has food splatters on many pages. I've used it a lot in 17 years.

Meatballs & Spaghetti

1 medium onion, chopped
3 cloves chopped garlic
2 Tablespoons Olive Oil
1 14 1/2 can of chopped tomatoes
3 cans of tomato sauce
2 Tablespoons Sugar
1 teaspoon sweet basil
Salt to taste
Pepper to taste
2 cups water

Saute onions and garlic in olive oil. When golden brown, add tomatoes and tomato sauce. Stir in sugar, basil, salt, pepper and water. If too thick, add more water. While sauce is cooking, make meatballs.

5 crackers soaked in water and drained
1 1/2 lbs beef
4 eggs
1 clove chopped garlic
1 Tablespoon chopped parsley
1/2 cup Parmesan Cheese
Salt and Pepper to taste
Squeeze water out of the crackers. To crackers, add ground meat, eggs, garlic parsley, and cheese; salt and pepper to taste. Roll into meatballs. Place on slightly greased cookie sheet and cook in oven until brown. Then add meatballs to sauce and simmer for at least 4 hours on medium heat.

Live Blogging-First Day As a Temporary Stay At Home Mom

My sister (who is also newly unemployed) was telling me yesterday how the dynamics are now that Rosie has invaded The View. Her thinking was that Joy Behar is not pleased.

So, now, Rosie is the "leader" of The View? Ick is what I say to that.

I used to love Rosie before she became the Angry Lesbian. I don't care if she lives with a woman or if she shacks up with a monkey. That is not of my concern. I like Rosie funny. As my friend, the great philosopher, Raymond E. Huffmaster, the Poet Laureate of Meridian, Mississippi,
would say; "Ka-lick-uh". As in change the channel.

And since when did they put Pat Robertson on at 10:00 in the morning on Channel 4? I'd rather watch Tony Danza than him. Pat makes those of us who claim Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior look very bad. The man is senile. His son reminds me more of Al Franken's impression than it does Pat.

Bob Barker is still alive, holding that skinny microphone. Has Bob not been told yet that there's this really cool invention called the Wireless Microphone? I guess for a 102 year old, he'd be lost without his microphone.

Diane Sawyer, Robin Roberts, Chris Cuomo and that new weather guy on GMA make for THE whitest morning quartet in daytime television. I say they bring back David Hartman and Joan Lunden.

I'm really pumped about the newest Tide laundry detergent.

Green Acres makes for nice, morning, SAHM television viewing. I just love that pig that watches tv. Eb was kinda cute in a retard sorta way.

I fixed a fabulous dinner last night for the Smiff Clan: Paula Deen's Pork Chops, homemade Macaroni and Cheese and Asparagus. Mr. Smiff was so thrilled, he asked what was on for today. I'm thinking we're going to go Italian with Mama Giordano's spaghetti or something like that. I love to make homemade spaghetti. My favorite part is the beginning where I saute the garlic in Olive Oil.

So Now What?

This is the first morning in almost ten years that I've gotten up and do not have to rush to get ready and get downtown. I'm not on vacation or taking a day off. I am unemployed.

I have plenty to busy myself with. It's just weird.

Monday, September 11, 2006

At The Bus Stop

#1 Son had a little bit of an issue getting on the bus this morning. Seems there was a substitue driver and apparently, the driver did not see #1 and shut the door on his hand. #1 was saying, no, hollering, "Excuse me!" and had to run alongside the bus until it opened. He was slightly miffed (understandably) and the Sub had the balls to say "You don't have to be so mean about it."

It was only his hand. That would cause me to be slightly irritated as well. I'm just glad my boy didn't lose his limb trying to get on the friggin school bus.

Ok, who remembers the little guy that used to do the Bus Report on the Ralph Emery Show? Gil Gilliam? (I know Busy Mom and CeeElCee will) He was a teenager and I believe he had some sort of Muscular Dystrophy. He was something of a local celebrity and even appeared in W. W. and the Dixie Dance Kings, a movie Hazel makes a small appearance in and a movie I saw a scene filmed when I was about 4.

Lordy, the women were screaming (my mother included) over Burt Reynolds. I have pictures somewhere of this event. Why has this movie never showed up on DVD?

One of the more random posts I've ever written. From my kid nearly losing a hand to the Bus Report to Burt Reynolds.

And Furthermore.....

I'm sick to death of hearing everybody badmouthing George Bush today. It's his fault 9/11 happened. That is the biggest bunch o'ka ka.

Had Bill Clinton not been busy being serviced in the Oval Office by Miz Lewinski, perhaps he'd have tended to matters appropriately. I am not a Bill Clinton hater. Quite the contrary. I think he is perhaps one of the smartest president's we've ever had. I just think if you're going to point fingers at "administrations" you might ougta point one at his.

I'm not that smart about politics. I don't express myself well when it comes to stuff like this, nor do I like to argue politics. (I leave that to Mr. Smiff).


I remember getting up on 9/11/01 to go to work. I remember listening to Rick and Bubba while I got ready. Mr. Smiff and I were separated at the time and the kids were with him so I was by myself that morning. I remember that day, driving to work, how blue and pretty the sky was. It was a sparkly, beautiful blue. It wasn't really humid either.

I got to work at 7:30...doing my settling thing. I had the radio on low (I was in a cube situation and couldn't play it loud) STILL listening to the Two Sexiest Fat Men Alive (I miss them, still, being on the air here).

I was doing what kind of work I did then and I heard Rick and Bubba talking fast and rather excitedly and then Bubba hollered "Whoa! There's another one!" I turned the radio up to see what was happening and pieced together what I could. I hollered at my co-workers and they ignored me so I got up and announced "Two planes have crashed into the World Trade Center."
It was almost impossible to get on CNN or any of the news' websites..the traffic was so high. I kept the radio on. Rick and Bubba provided great coverage. One girl on my floor had a tiny little tv but you couldn't see anything. That was so frustating, not being able to see much of what was happening and imagining it.

When I heard that the Pentagon had been hit and that the plane had gone down in Pennsylvania, my knees went weak. I started pacing. I walked back and forth. Then my boss, at the time said "We have a cross on our building. We'll be the next target!!!" Oh great. Numbing fear just took over me for a minute. We still didn't have all the info at this point and it was scary.

Then, as quickly as the fear had come on, a peace came. The Peace That Passes All Understanding...I remembered two days before, driving back from Knoxville where we had celebrated my daughter's 8th birthday, I had listened to Twila Paris' "God Is In Control" and kept running it back and playing it again and again. The odd thing about that is , I don't normally listen to Contemporary Christian music. I don't have anything against it, it's just not usually what you'll find in my cd player. For some reason on that little mini-road trip, I had this cd. The lyrics stayed with me and stay with me still:

This is no time for fear
This is a time for faith and determination
Don't lose the vision here Carried away by emotion
Hold on to all that you hide in your heart
There is one thing that has always been true
It holds the world together

God is in control
We believe that His children will not be forsaken
God is in control We will choose to remember
and never be shaken
There is no power above or beside Him, we know
God is in control, oh God is in control

Another thing that I remember about that day that stands out in my mind is that me and Mr. Smiff were divorced. The first family member I wanted to speak to after all that....was him. We remarried December 3, 2001. I don't know if this tragedy had any bearing on that. I just remember wanting/needing to talk to him.

I remember going to Chapel that morning. A few people prayed. We were all a little numb.

I remember picking my older kids up from after school care and explaining to them what had happened. They had not told them anything at school that day.

I remember getting gas that night and there was a long line. People were afraid there'd be a rush on gas or they'd jack the price up.

I went to church that night.

#2 was 3 years old and was heavily into "Toy Story 2" at the time. I remember in the middle of all the weirdness of the day, watching Woody and Buzz, and little #2 lost in Woody's Roundup and thinking how little ones his age had no clue how the world had changed that day.

Sunday, September 10, 2006

For Jenine

Jenine Gonzalez was 5 days away from her 28th birthday on September 11, 2001. Jenine got up and went to work that beautiful, September morning, to the 102nd floor of the South Tower to her job as an executive assistant at the Aon Corporation, never dreaming the horror that would ensue a little before 9:00. She probably had gotten some coffee or chatted with co-workers about what they had done the night before, settling in to begin the day.

2001 had not been an easy year for Jenine and her family. In February, her mother had died after fighting cancer for a long time. Her favorite singer Aaliyah had been killed in a plane crash in August.

Things had begun to look up though. In the spring, Jenine had gone full time at Aon Corporation after working there as a temp for awhile. She celebrated her new job by taking her grandmother, who had raised her, for a Mother's Day cruise around Manhattan.

Jenine had other dreams besides being an executive assistant at Aon. She had dreams of having her own business. Because she loved music so much, Jenine wanted to become an events coordinator/promoter, specifically for Latin and Hip-Hop groups. Jenine would read every book she could get her hands on, attended seminars and sought out party planners and band managers to pick their brains.

Everything I've read on Jenine, there is a common thread running through descriptions of her by those who knew and loved her: Her relentlessly positive attitude, she loved to laugh, and she always made you feel good.

I am so humbled to attempt to honor Jenine today by taking part in the 2996 Project. I know her family is remembering and missing her today as they do everyday. My thoughts and prayers are with all of the families of the victims, but, I'm grateful to have a face and name to specifically remember today.

Saturday at Wolfy's

I made it down to the Blogger Meet up at Wolfy's. Because I was a little slow in getting going, I didn't get to spend much time viztin with everybody (that's why I go to those things). I had to actually sit still and (gasp) listen while people talked.

Michael Rosenblum was fantastic. I about jumped out of my seat when he was telling how he and his former wife created Trauma: Life in the ER and that whole slew of shows. Mr. Smiff forever makes fun of my loving to watch that show. When he's watching wrestling and I indicate I don't wish to partake in that sort of viewing, he'll say something like "Oh, let's watch somebody bleed on one of your shows." Rosenblum was highly interesting and entertaining.

One thing I learned from the day is that I'm not a "real" blogger because I didn't have my laptop there, liveblogging the presentation. I did not know "real" bloggers only blog from laptops. Hmmm. Interesting. (I do want one thought)

Now, the important part...who did I see at the meetup? First, I made the unwise choice to not bring a camera because I figured there'd be enough there to document the day. I thought for sure Kerry Woo would be there, but, he was flying off somewhere on a plane. I missed him and his camera, but, to see the picture of Kerry in a Cheesehead hat made up for the fact that he was not there.

I finally got to meet Ivy. She was the first blogger I ever emailed with. She is quite adorable and I was thrilled to meet her.

Christian Grantham, aka "The Ultra Hip and Cool Channel 2 Producer" is one I've had linked for awhile and love to read. What a nice guy! Go read him.

B-Dub, my fellow Hendersonvillian was easy to spot. I gotta say though, his picture on his site doesn't do him justice. He is drop-dead handsome, ladies, and it seems that he is single.

While we were sitting and behaving during the presentation, I leaned over and asked CeeElCee "Who is the guy in the Keith Richards t-shirt?" "That", said my best blogger friend, "Is John...Hutch.....of Salems Lots." I was thrilled to meet John. John is one of the scads of bloggers who so eloqently blog political. I admire all the political bloggers. I don't always agree with all they write about, but, their ability to be able to write about it so intelligently impresses the heck out of me. John is fantastic at it. What a nice feller.

I met Pink Kitty (who the more I looked at the more I thought I either knew from somewhere or maybe she just looked like somebody I know). I got to say howdy to the famous Kay Brooks as well.

I was quite pleased to formally meet Sarcastro. I saw him across the crowded room the last time we were at Wolfy's, but, never got to him. Gosh, since I saw him, he's done gotten married and become a dad.

I got to see my girls; Kathy T., Malia, Katherine Coble, and Aunt B and missed some of the other girls who couldn't make it. Saturday mornings must not be the best time for a blog get together, but, I'm sure it was at that time to accomodate Mr. Rosenblum.

I'm sure I missed something or somebody. Something I purposely stayed away from was the fantastic table of food that the nice people at Channel 2 laid out. I looked at it and inspected it, but, decided it wasn't worth the points. Yay me.

Saturday, September 09, 2006


She started out like this on September 9, 1993. (What is that thing on her head? For some reason, mothers in the early 90's thought that having stuff on baby girls' heads was cute. We were wrong. Very wrong.) She was the easiest delivery I had of the three. 2 pushes and there she was. When they handed her to me for the first time, her eyes were wide open as if to say "Ok...what are we going to do today?"

When she was about a week old, I had her in her little baby seat and I sat it on the coffee table (in the middle) and ran to get her bottle out of the refrigerator (about 3 seconds). She was hungry, ready to eat and in those couple seconds I was away, she had gotten so highly pissed off, she had flung herself out of the baby seat, onto the floor. She wanted to eat!

The same tenaciousness appeared when she was learning to pull herself up at about 7-8 months old. She'd pull up to the coffee table (the same one she flew off of), fall right on her face...she would get SO mad, but, she'd keep pulling herself up. She still is very hard headed when she gets her head around something she wants to do.

She started talking when she was 9 months old. I don't remember her first word because she said so many words. She would sing herself to sleep before her first birthday. If she wanted you to pick her up, she'd say "I wanna hold you."

There are only 20 months between her and her older brother. They used to be the cutest little team. One morning, they "redecorated" their room with a Sharpie. A black one. The walls, the furniture, the beds, themselves...

She played soccer for a few seasons. Her first coach said she was a natural athelete. Sports weren't her thing though. I grieved that she never showed any interest in softball since that was my sport. I got over it.

She started wearing glasses when she was 5. For about 2 years, she had not spoken a word in public, at school or church. She'd talk to us, but, would not talk to anybody when we weren't around. We didn't know what was going on. We had a child specialist observe and examine her. Nothing. Then, she failed her eye exam at her Kindergarten check up. I took her to the eye doctor and he sat her in a chair on one end of the room and had her watch a tv at the other end of the room. He put all kinds of lenses in front of her eyes and administered some drops. When we went out the waiting room to let the pupils dilate, she said to me, "Mommy, I want some of those things to watch tv with." I started bawling and realized why she had not talked. She couldn't see. She was confident around us, but, away from us, she was scared to death.

She's pretty motherly with her younger brother. She can be with the older one, too. She fights with #2, and he'll say, "She hates me." I know better than that.

She has a great sense of humor and I'm so glad. Most of the time, she can laugh at herself. I'm glad about that, too. I see so much of myself in her, when I was her age. She hates when I say she's like me. Facts are facts. I don't envy her being a 13 year old girl in 2006. It was hard being 13 in 1982, but, I think, it's much harder now. Sometimes I wish I could snap my fingers and she'll be through this awkward stage. She'll get through it fine as long as she can keep laughing.

When did she turn into this young lady? How could it have happened so fast? This morning when Mr. Smiff got in off the road, about 6 a.m. I said, "Our baby girl is 13 today. Where has the time gone?" Either he was too tired to say anything or think about it or it's just too much for him to put into words. I think it's the latter.

When she was little, she was very attached to me. I used to say to her that we were the "Bestest Girlfriends in the Whole Wide World." It was so cute when she'd say "You're my best guwrfriend in the whole wide wurd." Even though she prefers the company of the likes of these girls at the moment, she knows deep down who her best girlfriend is.
Happy Birthday, Dear Tara.

Friday, September 08, 2006

Funny Hazel Quote of the Week

Hazel says a lot of funny things. Most days you'll get some sort of funny quip or quote from her on a myriad of subjects from sex to the proper way to make green beans. (No onions in them.)

So, I'm counting Weight Watcher points and I've had a really good week. It's been like withdrawal from heroin. Amazing the times I find myself reaching for food when I, like, shouldn't. I've been to the Y and ran (ok JOGGED) a couple days, trying to get back in the swing and make a better, healthier Sista. One day at a time, sweet Jesus.

Tonight, me and #2 decided we'd come visit Grandma Hazel and Nephew and Niece Smiff (she's about 15 months old). I stopped and got me a Healthy Choice Chicken Parmigian for my suppah and was going to stop at McDonald's (bad mother) for #2. Hazel calls and says she has meatloaf. I can't handle meatloaf. It's one of my trigger foods and one of my specialties that I make. I know myself around meatloaf and it ain't purty.

I called Mr. Smiff (who is playing this very minute at the University of Alabama in Tuscaloosa) if Grandma would be mad if I brought my Healthy Choice to her house and ate it. "No..you are bettering yourself." I was still scared to bring something into her house like a frozen thing. I didn't want to insult her on her turf.

I got my nerve up and said "Um, I hope you don't mind that I brought this with me. I didn't know we were going to eat here and I'm trying to eat right, yada, yada".

Hazel took a long pause and said "Well...lah tee dah!"

You will get to see Hazel on her very own tv show on CMT on the first of October. They're doing a show like Dinner and A Movie, but, it's called Southern Fried Flicks. Watch for it.

Bridges Brokem

The whole idea of Toby Keith starring in a movie stirs up about as much anticipation and excitement in me as getting a root canal. According to the Tennessean, we can all rest easy tonight because this blockbuster is just the FIRST of more movies to come from the Tobster. YAY!

What previews I've seen, the acting can be compared with Lorrie Morgan's acting debut back in 1993. When I think of Lorrie acting, I think of that skit they used to do on either SNL or In Living Color where it made fun of over acting by African American's.

I got SOOO tickled at Kelly Preston at the premiere at the Ryman last night, trying to convince us she is "country." In spite of being born and raised in Hawaii, saith Mrs. Travolta, she "gets that whole feeling of community." Say what? Where'd she learn that from? L. Ron Hubbard?

Gimme a break. This hits me like the Love Boat episode where Florence Henderson played a country singer, complete with "yee haws".

Why I Don't Want To Leave

We have a sweet, older, black lady who works here in our cafeteria named Delores. Delores works in the deli, making sandwiches. I don't know how long she's been here, but, she's been making me sandwiches for a long time. She knows what kind of bread I like, that I like regular turkey, as opposed to smoked; she knows I don't want a pickle with my sandiwch. Our conversations have never strayed from things having to do with sandwiches. Delores is not one for small talk. She has sandwiches to make for people. Still, she's part of my life here where I work. One of those comforting, familiar faces that I have come to love over the last 10 years.
Word gets around because Delores just asked me, "Are you leaving?" I told her "Yeah, unless I find something else, which I'm working on." "Well" Delores says, "I sure hope you find something else." I thanked her and went on to pay for my stuff.
When I got back up to my desk to eat my turkey sandwich, I noticed Delores had put extra turkey on there. She usually puts the exact same amount of meat on each sandwich, but, this one had noticeably much more than usual. I guess the mother in her came out and she wanted to make sure I had enough meat stored for the winter. Pretty sweet.

Thursday, September 07, 2006

Sista Smiff Annoyances

I hate when you're in a conversation with somebody and you are telling them something and the person you're speaking to says "Ok" after each pause. I'd much prefer an 'Uh-huh" than an "ok."

I also hate it when you're talking to somebody and they get a kleenex or a handkerchief and just start going to town in their nose, as if you weren't there. Can you possibly wait a minute to pick your nose? Must you do it in front of me?

Wednesday, September 06, 2006

The Old Gray Mare

Mr. Smiff had gotten a copy of the first season of Grey's Anatomy in a goodie bag from Fan Fair or something. I said to myself "Ok, I'm going to see if this show is really as great as everybody says." I've only watched one episode thus far....a bunch of horny doctors. Whoop-tee-doo.

Then, I watched an episode on tv the other night and I was slightly freaked out to see Mare Winningham portraying a grandmother-to-be. WTF?!?! She is not old enough to be a grandmother, for the love of Rob Lowe and Emilio Estevez! I started to do a blog post of my freaked outedness of the whole Mare's A Grandma thing, but, true to my nature, I got sidetracked or forgot or something.

This is where the weirdness comes in. Tonight, Mr. Smiff's cell phone rang (his cell phone rings a LOT these days. So much, he almost needs one of them ear pieces so he can talk in public with his hands on the phone) and it's this musician guy who is going to be producing an album on Grandma Mare and does Mr. Smiff have Alison Krauss's phone number cause Mare wants to sing with her?

Maybe that's not weirdness to anybody else, but, I thought it terribly ironic. I wish to Jesus that guy would hire Mr. Smiff to play on the session solely so he could say "You know, my wife blogged about how you played a grandma."

I've Got The Joy, Joy, Joy, Joy Down In My Heart

My Aunt Joy is quite amazing. She is my dad's oldest sister, the oldest of the 5 kids in his family. She is 86 years young, has had a couple strokes, yet gets on the computer and checks email everyday. My mother is 71 and refuses to touch a computer. Probably because she thinks its a lesbian or something. Probably part of why Joy is still going strong at her age is she has always stayed with the times, tried new things. She raised two fine kids, alone, worked...after she retired, she took guitar lessons! (Sidenote..her grandaughter, Julie Hanson, appeared on Broadway as "Christine" in Phantom)

She never missed a birthday of any of her family, including her many nieces and nephews. She even remembers her abundant number of great nieces and nephews. She used to send a card to all of us every year on our birthdays. She just emailed my daughter to wish her a happy birthday this week. Makes me cry that she takes the time to remember my girl.

Everybody needs an aunt like Joy.

And SHUT UP laughing at my top. It was 1987! This was my Loretta Lynn phase. In fact, I have this same top on in a picture with Loretty!

Down No Mo'

Nothing lifts a pouty mood like lunch with nice people. I started not to go because I've been in such crapola mode the last two days and didn't want to be like Debbie Downer. Thing is, anytime you are in the company of Busy Mom, CeeElCee and Short and Fat, a down mood is surely to be run o-f-t pretty quickly.
Maybe I should consider being social more often.

Tuesday, September 05, 2006

What is the Point??

After weeks of stuffing myself, I decided today I would count Weight Watcher points. I did really good...until I got home and we had supper.

Supper was leftover hot dogs from last night that Mr. Smiff grilled and were oh-so-good. I ate two of them tonight and it's no wonder my britches have been getting so snug lately. Those two hot dogs overdid my points by 8. Holy Oscar Meyer! Hot dogs are 5 points APIECE and the buns are 3 points apiece.

It kinda explains the notion that fat people don't think they eat that much. How many times have you heard a fat person say that? I know I tell myself certain things and rationalize (like I did tonight in choosing to eat the hot dogs instead of a frozen thing). Total denial. Gah.

I guess this is how we learn to change our eating habits, eh?

Take It On Faith, Take It To The Heart

I didn't tell y'all that the day after my job was eliminated, my sister (who I have yet to give a good nickname to) was told she would no longer be able to have her job any longer either. In our family, we like to do everything together, including get dumped.

She lost a job last year after Thanksgiving after being with this particular employer for many years. She then went to work for another company and it wasn't her cup of tea. She got on with this company she just got let go of, after that.

The difference in her situation is she will have the opportunity to be a Stay At Home mom now. I think it's good because she has a 4 year old daughter who will trot off to kindergarten next year and this will give them some nice time together.

I was a Stay At Home Mom for 5 years when the first two Smiff Kids were little. At the time, I could not have managed going to work and with what I'd have been paid, all my compensation would've gone to daycare for the two chilluns. I still believed what my mother said then that I couldn't handle two small children and a job. I probably could've. I was so stinkin' young then (early 20's) . I'm glad I was able to be a SAHM then. Especially now that those kids are teenagers.

I've been at the same place ever since before #2 was born. I've worked different positions during his life, including a couple of part time gigs. Because moms tend to blame themselves for things their kids go through, I have often wondered if #2 would not have had his issue with ADHD if I could've stayed home with him like I did the older two. I know that's crazy, but, one can't help but wonder if he'd be better socially had I been able to be there everyday, all day with him.

If I had the choice, I would probably be home at least part of the time. I don't try to be a SuperMom with my full time work schedule, plus three kids, plus Mr. Smiff traveling and gone so damn much. My house is not what you'd call clean and organized, in fact, it's a bloomin' wreck.

If I could stay home, I'd have a nice, clean Casa and there'd be a bountfiul meal on the table at the same time each evening, representing the Food Pyramid. If I could stay home, I could actually have time with Mr. Smiff. We are usually like passing ships, with him coming in from work as I'm going out. That's not an easy thing.

On the other hand, if I stayed home, I would also probably never see other people, as I have that tendency towards introvertedness. I don't do hanging around at the school and I'm not the Social Butterfly my sister is. I became a virtual recluse when I was a SAHM before. That's not healthy or good for me either.

Also, if I stayed home, the Smiffs would have no health insurance. Musicians, especially self employed ones, don't get health insurance from their work. I no longer find watching shows like A Baby Story enjoyable and inspiring. I do like me some Regis and Dr. Phil though.

My melancholiness will pass...my temporary feeling of "Holy crap! I'm losing my job!" will subside...I know something's going to come up and it will be better, etc.

What did Tom Petty say so eloquently...The Waiting is hardest part.


It took a few days for it all to settle and process, but, as far as this postition being deleted thing goes....I am now officially pissed off about it and sad.

That's it.

Monday, September 04, 2006

This Day And Age?

Y'all know I don't usually do political around here, however, I saw this article from the Caswell Messenger in Yanceyville,NC, and my jaw dropped.

I know this is the rural south, but, it is 2006. Unbelievable.

Steve Irwin

#2 woke me up early this morning wanting me to open the package of waffles. I tried to manuever the plastic in my half-sleeping state when #2 said "That Steve Irwin guy that wrestles crocodiles died." I thought he was kidding until I switched the channel to Channel 4 and sho nuff. I don't guess any of us are surprised he got hisself killed since he thrived on danger, but, I always figured a crocodile would get him, not a stingray.

All three of the Smiff Kids were sad to hear about ol' Steve. Steve was this generation's Marlin Perkins, kinda. They've been seeing him wrassle crocodiles all their lives.

#2's announcement this morning reminded me of January 2, 1974. I was a little younger than #2 is now, but, this was the day Tex Ritter died, suddenly of a heart attack. Our local news was not near as sophisticated as it is now with breaking news and all they did was have a voice announce it. I didn't really have a grasp of who Tex was at the time, but, I knew he was somebody my father knew. I went into the kitchen and told Mom and she thought I made it up.
Anybody who thrives on danger like Steve did asks to meet an early end, but, still...I always enjoyed watching him in action and listening to him talk.

Saturday, September 02, 2006

Deep Thoughts-By Sista Smiff

When I think of famous guys named Lester, this is the image that usually pops into my mind:

Or this:

Everytime I see this Lester on tv, I'm bumfuzzled that such a hot, suave, sexy guy answers to the name "Lester" and it makes me laugh.
When you think about it, there are not a lot of famous people named Lester. I put on my thinking cap and these are the only three I could come up with. Who am I missing?

Friday, September 01, 2006

The One Where I Talk About How Much I Hate My Cats

I was reading Ms. Coble's post about her cat that she loved that died and rose again...kinda like the Lord. I am feeling sorta kinda bad that I don't have the same affection for the cats at my house.

The Smiffs have two cats. Their names are Emily and Crystal. They are housecats. Emily is a cute, little tortoiseshell and Crystal is black and white. I hate them both. I just do. They never go outside (Mr. Smiff fears they will get smashed), they are more destructive than any dog I've ever own.

Not only are they destructive, but, they nag. They start their nagging me early in the morning when I get up. They want to be fed. They won't shut up til you feed them. They get on the counters. They knock trash over. They lick garbage bags and drive me crazy doing that.

Obivous that I'm not into them, but, who do they most love to cuddle up against in the middle of the night?? Yep. Me. I think they do that just to piss me off. It works.

Mr. Smiff and #1 Son are the ones in the house who REALLY love the cats. The Dawta and #2 love them, but, #1 is the one that's really tight with them. If they disappeared to never be seen again, I would not be sad. Sorry.

I did not grow up with cats in the house because I was allergic to them. Terribly allergic. Everytime we'd go to San Antonio, we'd stay at my Uncle Charles and Aunt June's house. June was a cat freak. Loved them. Everytime we'd go to San Antonio (twice a year) I would get sick and they'd have to haul me to the doctor. It never clicked with what made me sick until I was about 13 and spent the night at Kathy Burgess's house. She had this cute little kitten that I was unusually attracted to and my eyes swelled up and we put it all together. (My folks were quick!) As long as I don't touch them they don't bother me. Every so often I will get swollen eyes because they're just around but I do ok allergy-wise as long as I don't mess with them. Because I hate these cats, me messing with them is not a problem.

The Smiffs first cat found us. Mr. Smiff went outside one morning to find a teeny, calico kitten sleeping on his tire. We had no idea where she came from. One of her eyes was messed up badly. It looked like it had been gouged out. She was malnourished and just so tiny. We named her "Stella" (I like people names for pets). She was with us for about 6 years. She was never healthy. Probably because she was separated from her mother too soon. She was a great cat though. She kept to herself. Every now and then she'd come out and want you to pet her then she'd go on about her business.

Emily and Crystal wrestle, they scratch, they get all hyper and jump to the top of door frames, they wake you up in the middle of the night trying to open the door....they drive me nuts. I threaten at least twice a day to get rid of them. They'll try to sneak out the front door and I always say one of these days I'm going to say "Oops...cats got out. Tis a tragedy." I don't like them and wish they'd go away.

I know some of the cat lovers will tell me all I'm doing wrong as a cat owner but the bottom line is I don't like them, but, I'm overruled in the house. I like a nice, quiet cat. These cats are psychotic.

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